Brexit – overview of new trading and VAT rules

Brexit trade agreement #1


Feb 12, 2021


Business Advice

Since 1 January 2021 there are new Brexit rules that apply to doing business with Europe. You can check using the links below what you need to do if you are:


Perhaps unsurprisingly, Brexit has caused extra layers of administration, courier fees, VAT problems and unexpected customs invoices for both importers and exporters. VAT is now being collected at the point of sale rather than at the point of importation. This means that overseas retailers sending goods to the UK are expected to register for UK VAT and account for it to HMRC if the sale value is less than €150 (£135). With all the extra red tape at borders, smaller businesses are now evaluating whether it is worth their while exporting to the EU and the reverse is equally true.

The changes are problematic, and it will certainly take some time for any simpler systems to emerge. When the current grace periods come to an end and full customs checks come into force it may affect attitudes further.  Key upcoming dates for Brexit are:

  • April – the movement of goods rules for products of animal origin come into force
  • June – the settlement scheme registration process for people from the EU to remain in the UK ends
  • July – new border controls will come into force after the six-month grace period and customs declarations will become permanent


We can but hope that businesses will be able to adapt, and that we will see new solutions to smooth trade gradually emerge. Further help is available on the website, where you can use the transition checker to understand HMRC processes for importing, exporting or customs relief, or call the Customs and International Trade Helpline.



Getting an EORI number



Importing and exporting goods


Customs tariffs


UK VAT after Brexit


UK Trader Scheme – GB & NI  


SME Brexit Support Fund




Brexit – overview of new trading and VAT rules
Article Name
Brexit – overview of new trading and VAT rules
A collection of articles summarising the new Brexit rules for trade and VAT which now apply to UK businesses importing to, or exporting from, the EU.
Publisher Name
Paish Tooth
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